Updated: Aug 15, 2019
Earlier this month I had the opportunity to travel to Lubbock, Texas as part of the Texas Peanut Tour. We ate UNBELIEVABLE food, which the chefs included peanuts as an ingredient. I am more of a sweets fan when it comes to peanuts and had no idea peanuts can be used in so many different savory types of dishes. Before we dive into some neat facts about peanuts and why they are so awesome, check out a selection of my favorite dishes from the trip.
One special dessert we ate was a peanut butter and jelly pie by Evie Mae's BBQ. Man oh man was this ever delicious. Feast your eyes...
If PB & J Pie isn't your jam, then this Peanut Butter Gelato made with grass-fed Jersey cow milk by Pereira Pastures Dairy might be your sweet treat of choice. Hands down the best dang gelato I have ever tasted in my life! Why is Jersey milk better? Jerseys produce the highest quality milk for human food. A glass of Jersey milk has greater nutritional value than a glass of average milk: 20% more quality protein and 15% more calcium. A cow is not just a cow when it comes to milk. Your taste buds will appreciate the difference.
Not only did we eat peanuts as part of a sweet treat, we also ate this amazing Pad Thai dinner entree by the West Table with a Thai-Peanut-Chili Oil, topped with scallions and broccoli. Typically I am not a huge fan of Thai food, but this dish made me a believer.
Peanuts are not only delicious and versatile, they are actually eco-friendly! So why are peanuts such an unbelievable crop?
First of all they are extremely sustainable compared to other nuts. An ounce of peanuts takes about 5 gallons of water to produce. Compare that to almonds, which take 80 gallons of water to produce just one ounce. So give your peanuts some LOVE!
Trying to avoid GMOs in your diet? One of the most interesting facts I learned while on the tour is that there are no GMO peanuts grown in the entire world. So you know all those packages that claim non-GMO peanuts, don't pay extra for them. All peanuts are non-GMO.
Texas is actually more than just the Dallas Cowboys and BBQ. It's the 2nd largest peanut producing state in the U.S. and the only state to grow four different types of peanuts (Valencia, Spanish, Runner, and Virginia). Each peanut tastes a little different and is used for different purposes. For example, Runners are typically used for peanut butter.
I learned on this tour that peanuts are awesome and can help save the earth one gallon of water at a time. I not only tasted great food while visiting, I am inspired to create new dishes with peanuts, and not just sweet ones.
Next time you drive through west Texas and see fields upon fields of short green leafy crops, give those farmers a tip of the hat for producing eco-friendly peanuts in peanut butter on a grocery store shelf near you.